Winston didn't lunge for the dropped cantaloupe, because that isn’t how he is accustomed to being fed. He doesn't scrounge for crumbs and scraps of food inadvertently left behind and hope to make a meal out of them. He is fed from a benevolent loving hand that scoops abundantly from a food supply designed just for him. He never goes hungry or has to beg for the smallest handout. His owners love to feed him regularly and generously.
As I pondered Winston I saw myself. Unfortunately, unlike Winston, I am not always so certain of my Master’s provision and daily sustenance. Sometimes I see God not as a generous God who "loves to give good gifts to his children," (Matthew 7:11) but as a minimalist God who, like the miserly Scrooge, doles out the smallest portion he can get away with in order to satisfy his responsibility. This faulty perception affects my prayers. Instead of praying BIG, I pray small, like a pauper trying to beg a scrap or a small coin from a reluctant passerby. I pray hesitantly, almost apologetically, when I have to ask, and then only for needs, never wants or "extras," because after all, God only promises to supply my NEEDS, right?
But WHY do I think, like the Samaritan "dogs" of Jesus' healing parable, that I have to "eat the scraps that fall from the Master's table" instead of expecting God to "prepare a table before me"? (Psalm 23:5) In His Word, God tells us to "Open your mouth WIDE, and I will fill it!" (Psalm 81:10). He tells us that "He satisfies the desires of every living thing," (Psalm 145:15), does "exceedingly, abundantly, above all that we could ever ask or imagine," (Ephesians 3:20 ) and supplies “all our need according to His riches and glory." (Philippians 4:19) Our God is NOT a minimalist God. He wants to "pour out a blessing so great that you will not have room to receive it." (Malachi 3:10)
Next time I pray, I plan to sit at Jesus' feet expectantly and with trust to see what great abundance will flow from His hand to my heart. "Early in the morning, I lay my request before you and wait in expectation!" (Psalm 5:3)
Lori Hatcher lives in Columbia, SC, and is the wife of a youth pastor, homeschooling mother of two lovely young women, part-time dental hygienist, published writer, and author of the blog “Be Not Weary.”